Empowering Southeast Alaskan Communities to reach cultural, ecological and economic prosperity.
November 7th, 2016 
Welcome to The Sustainable Southeast Partnership (SSP) .  We are a diverse network of organizations and individuals working together to meet the challenge of sustainable community development in Southeast Alaska.

It is our collective mission to empower rural Alaskan communities to reach cultural, ecological and economic prosperity.

A crisp and cool autumn is settling over the Southeast. However, this certainly doesn't mean that our partners are rearing up to hibernate. We have plenty of exciting work and news to share.

Please continue to follow along on facebook , our  website and  blog and subscribe here for future newsletters .

"Nothing is impossible. The word itself says 'I'm possible'." -- Audrey Hepburn

Shaina Kilcoyne Recognized for Her Dedication to Energy Independence 

Written by Alana Peterson
Each quarter we recognize one of our SSP Catalysts for their exceptional efforts and contribution to our collective mission. This quarter we recognize Shaina Kilcoyne, the Regional Catalyst for Energy Independence. Shaina is employed by Renewable Energy Alaska Project (REAP) and has dedicated her career to improving the world through solving one of our most pressing global issues: energy security.
Shaina's work ethic is unwavering and her dedication to both project support and meaningful relationship building is admirable. Just ask Klawock, a community that walked away from the Alaska RACEE competition (see below for more information) one of seven winning communities thanks to her support.  Community leaders in Klawock undoubtedly demonstrated true collaboration by achieving this award. However, as is the case with most successful projects, a significant part of that success can be attributed to a person in a room somewhere burning the midnight oil. When it comes to energy independence in Alaska, that person is Shaina. We thank Shaina for her drive, her persistence, and for being a great role model and team member to all of us!

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership Has Annual Retreat in Hoonah
Annual Retreat Helps Chart Path Forward for Partnership

Written by Alana Peterson

One key element to a successful partnership is communication. In the Sustainable Southeast Partnership, our partner organizations model deliberate communication that results in action. One major way we commit to communicating is through two full partnership meetings twice a year in fall and spring.
This year's autumn retreat took place in Hoonah, Alaska from October 3-7th. We used this time to develop year-long work plans for our individual and collective projects, learn about projects in Hoonah, and strategize ways to grow and strengthen the Partnership in 2017.  Our retreat included a site visit to the new deep water dock and Icy Strait Point, a cruise ship destination that puts community and culture first. We also spent time learning about the Hoonah Native Forest Partnership, a powerful new model for land management in SE Alaska. We participated in a day-long workshop for community engagement and turned our newfound skills into action by hosting our first group community meeting.

Other outcomes of this year's retreat included a review of 13 successes from last year's projects.  Between all SSP partners, over 50 projects are taking place in 2017. A full list of those projects can be viewed here. The partners also dedicated four hours to identifying priority areas to strengthen the SSP in 2017. They include:

  1. Promote the SSP Collective Impact Model and Triple Bottom Line approach  to economic development in each of our communities through direct outreach.
  2. Catalysts & Partners will engage the community, new partners and new demographics to increase community ownership of the Sustainable Southeast Partnership.
  3. All partners will work towards making our partnership self-sustaining.
  4. All partners will celebrate at least one successful project this year and share that success with the community using strategic outreach.

Though physically tired and drained from a long week of collaborative work, each partner left Hoonah mentally reinvigorated and excited about the year of work ahead.  

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership poses for a group shot at Icy Strait Point during our Annual Retreat.
Summer Storytellers Help Tell Our Story in Film
Thank you to Lee House and Kendall Rock 

Written by Bethany Sonsini Goodrich

This summer, with the support of the Alaska Conservation Foundation and the Ted Smith Internship specifically, the Sustainable Southeast Partnership welcomed two fantastic film interns to Southeast Alaska. Both Lee House and Kendall Rock have pre-existing ties to our beautiful region and were ready to hit the ground running when they returned to the Southeast to help our Partnership use film to tell our story. They were based in Sitka and were mentored by myself and the Sitka Conservation Society but had the opportunity to meet and interview so many diverse partners across our region. They rambled down salmon streams with the Hoonah Native Forest Partnership, attended a business boot-camp on Prince of Wales Island, went beach seining on the Klawock Watershed and had heart-to-heart discussions with so many of our dedicated partners about the nature and importance of our collective work.

The result is a fantastic 11 minute look into our work on the ground told through the voices of our partners and community members. This film is being used as a tool to share our collaborative work with our communities, partners, change makers and our great funders. Thank you to Lee and Kendall for all your hard work, your creative eye and your persistence. Thank you to everyone who gave their voices and insight and helped Kendall and Lee along on this wild ride. 


Summer Celebrations
Kasaan Rededicates Whale House and Hoonah Celebrates Return to Glacier Bay
Linked stories written by Quinn Aboudara and Ian Johnson

This summer, two monumental events took place that celebrated and honored the history of Southeast Alaskan Natives. In Kasaan, the traditional Whale House was officially declared restored and re-dedicated in the company of over eight hundred witnesses. In Glacier Bay, the community of Hoonah celebrated the completion of a Tribal House and the return to the Huna Tlingit's traditional homeland in Bartlett Cove. Our partners the Hoonah Indian Association and Organized Village of Kasaan were two main driving forces behind each event and we honored their hard work and dedication with two beautiful stories that outlined both celebrations. 

Gunalchéesh and Hawa'a to our partners and to all individuals and organizations who helped make these meaningful projects so successful.  

Xunaa Shuká Hít, the Tribal House in Bartlet Cove erupts in celebration during this summer's dedication event. Photo by Ian Johnson
Exchanging Ideas and Building Momentum in a Global Context
The Nature Conservancy Emerald Edge Program Supports Community Exchanges to Hawaii and Hoonah

Articles written by Bob Christensen and Bethany Goodrich

The Nature Conservancy's Emerald Edge program facilitates Community Exchanges each year to support shared learning between coastal communities. This season, The Emerald Edge helped support two major exchanges. One exchange brought representatives from Kasaan, Kake and Lemensur Island to Hoonah to tour and better understand Hoonah's successful  burgeoning tourism industry. The second brought representatives from Southeast Alaska, British Columbia and Washington state to Hawaii to participate in the E Alu Pu Gathering and International Union for the Conservation of Nature's World Conservation Congress to situate our work in a global context.  The IUCN event is hosted every four years to bring together world leaders and set the path forward in conservation.

Both exchanges left participants with fresh ideas and reinvigorated momentum for our work in sustainable community building here in Southeast Alaska. 

During a community exchange to Hoonah, participants toured Icy Strait Point and learned about this rural community's efforts to build a sustainable and prosperous tourism economy. Photo by Bob Christensen
Honi is a traditional Hawaiian greeting where participants put their foreheads together and share a breath. During a global gathering in O'ahu, the Sustainable Southeast Partnership joined indigenous leaders from around the world to exchange ideas and build meaningful international relationships. After all, we are all in this together! Photo by Bethany Goodrich
Fourth Business Bootcamp is a Success
Path to Prosperity Business Competition Supports Twelve More Entrepreneurs

By Paul Hackenmueller

Haa Aaní and The Nature Conservancy hosted the 2016 Path to Prosperity (P2P) Boot Camp Weekend in Juneau, September 23-25.  The fourth year of the P2P business development competition brought finalist businesses from ten communities in Southeast Alaska together for an intense workshop focused on building their capacity as small business owners and learning how to incorporate triple-bottom-line practices into their business models.

The twelve entrepreneurs will develop business plans over the next two months, and two winners will be selected in February 2017 to receive grant funding of up to $40,000 plus one year of additional business support to launch or grow their business.

Haa Aaní and The Nature Conservancy are excited to see more and more interest in the competition each year, from SE Alaska entrepreneurs who are dedicated to developing community-businesses that make sustainable use of local resources.

Klawock Races to the RACEE Finish Line
Energy Efficiency Competition Presents New Opportunity for Community of Klawock

By Quinn Aboudara

The Remote Alaskan Communities Energy Efficiency Competition (RACEE)  was created by the Alaska Department of Energy in response to President Obama's commitment to fight climate change and assist remote Alaskan communities.  This $4 million initiative, opened in December of 2015 and received an initial sixty four pledges from communities to reduce energy usage. In the summer of 2016, fourteen of those communities were selected to receive technical assistance to further develop their energy efficiency plans. On October 21, 2016 the U.S. Department of Energy announced seven winners who will receive grant funding to execute projects based on the strength of their efforts and the impact the energy projects will have for the community.  Klawock was one of those winners.  

For Klawock, this is an opportunity to implement energy efficiency measures, thereby significantly improving the lives of the people who live and work in Klawock.  But it's also about connecting with the community, building bridges between various community entities to create partnerships that together toward a common goal.  No one person or group did this alone, it was through the hard work and determination of the entire community and those who live in Klawock that made this a success.

Moby the Mobile Greenhouse Completes Its First Growing Season
By Lia Heifetz

Puzzled drivers look on as the greenhouse cruises down Egan Drive toward the Juneau ferry terminal. There it is delicately backed down the ramp and on to the Alaska Marine Highway ferry. After a seven-hour journey through fjords and around the numerous islands of the Inside Passage, it touches down at its new summer home in Kake, a small coastal community of about 400 residents. In Kake, the greenhouse is towed off the ferry and to the school where the Organized Village of Kake, the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium, and students of Kake High School get to try out their green thumbs.  

Meet Moby, Alaska's first classroom greenhouse on wheels. Moby's walls rise about ten feet high from an 18-foot long flatbed trailer. With clear polycarbonate walls and ceiling, a solar powered fan for ventilation, a water catchment system, sturdy wooden raised beds, and hanging baskets brimming with rich topsoil, the greenhouse is nearly an all-inclusive growing system. All Moby needs is now sun, water, seeds, and some TLC, and it comes to life...

Yakutat Tribe Welcomes Ralph Wolfe as New Community Catalyst 

My name is Ralph Wolfe I am the Community Catalyst in Yakutat. I am also an employee of the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe and am the Tribal Transportation Director. I am a lifelong Alaskan, born and raised in Craig, on Prince of Wales Island. I left Alaska to pursue my education but always ended up back in my home state. I know now that I will be spending my life here.

I moved to Yakutat 5 years ago and have been enjoying my time exploring where my wife grew up and where we plan to raise our kids. It has given me the inspiration to help in any way possible to make this community prosper for many years to come. I am excited to be working on a couple of the major issues within the community including our housing shortage and lack of high-speed internet. Both challenges are not unique to Yakutat, so I hope this work will also help inform other SSP communities as well.

Welcome Ralph!
Now Hiring Local Foods Coordinator 

Are you passionate about building local food systems, knowledgeable in entrepreneurship and small business development, and interested in sustainable rural community development?
The Southeast Alaska Watershed Coalition, an SSP Partner, is seeking a Local Foods Coordinator to help lead efforts to localize the Southeast food system by

1) p roviding critical training, technical assistance and business development services to local food entrepreneurs

2) Facilitating the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of locally produced food products through an online marketplace and physical distribution centers servicing the region.

or contact Lia Heifetz, Local Foods Director at lia@growsoutheast.com

What Is the Sustainable Southeast Partnership?

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership is a diverse network that includes both regional and community-based organizations that are working together on sustainable development in Southeast Alaska. 

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership includes the rural Alaskan communities of  KakeKasaan Hydaburg   Hoonah   Sitka, Klawock  and  Yakutat   .